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Jagged Little Pill Star Antonio Cipriano Exits Show After Producers Were Accused of Transphobia

Jagged Little Pill Star Antonio Cipriano Exits Show After Producers Were Accused of Transphobia

9/27/2021 3:45:00 AM

Jagged Little Pill Star Antonio Cipriano Exits Show After Producers Were Accused of Transphobia

' Broadway should be a safe space for everyone,' Antonio Cipriano wrote as he announced that his performance with the cast at Sunday's 74th Tony Awards would be his last

Jagged has done to the trans and non-binary community, including cast members on stage, off stage, and behind the scenes in the production-making process. They are owed a space to exist and perform free of transphobia, and the opportunity to tell their own stories, just as I have over the years," she shared.

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"Action statements have been released, and I look forward to witnessing these changes; but I believe it will be in my best personal interest to focus more on work that I can align myself with emotionally and morally, just as Frankie would," Gooding continued.

Gooding's exit was previously announced, after she was cast as Nyota Uhura in the upcoming Paramount+ prequel series Star Trek: Strange New Worlds.Nora Schell, a non-binary actor who made their Broadway debut in the chorus and other roles on  headtopics.com

Jagged Little Pillasked to wait to get NECESSARY surgery to remove polyps from my vagina."After being diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) in 2019, Schell wrote that they communicated their condition to the show's management, also letting them know that they were struggling with anemia due to the subsequent blood loss from their PCOS. Schell said they were told that the information would be relayed to the creative team, but allegedly, that never happened.

Schell recounted losing consciousness due to their anemia during a dress rehearsal and wrote that a "higher up" told them to "push through."The inaction that followed their complaints "allowed me to be intimidated into staying and performing when I was clearly not well," Schell wrote, adding that a costar ultimately advocated for them and they were allowed to go home.

RELATED:Moulin Rouge! Tony Winner Karen Olivo on Why They Left Show: 'Something Really Shifted in Me'"After surgery I was intimidated by company management. The validity of my recovery period was diminished and dismissed. I was told 'I need to work to get paid' and that 'I can't expect to be paid when taking personal days,'" they wrote. "When I relayed the possibility of these growths returning/needing surgery again in the future, I was met with exasperation and told that if I had to take off it wouldn't be considered paid medical leave."

RELATED VIDEO: Alanis Morissette Is Coming to Broadway! 'Jagged Little Pill' Musical to Premiere in the FallAdditionally, Schell wrote that their gynecologist said she "could not ethically continue to operate" on them if they remained in a work environment that ignores their medical needs. headtopics.com

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"I've been vaguely referencing mistreatment for years, and this is certainly not an exhaustive account of my experiences, but it is certainly the most alarming, fundamentally wrong and DANGEROUS incident I experienced. I'm still dealing with the consequences of waiting to get this surgery," Schell concluded.

The lead producers issued a social media statement ensuring a "comprehensive investigation" on Saturday."We are deeply troubled by the recent claims that have been made by a former cast member. We met with our cast and members of our core creative team today to let them know we take this matter very seriously, and to share with them the actions we are taking in response," the statement read in part. "Broadway shows are by their very nature collaborative human efforts, so there is nothing more important to us than our people. We are committed to continuing to nurture a work environment where everyone feels valued and respected."

The show also previously faced controversy over the character Jo Taylor, who was originally written and played as non-binary during a run in Boston. However, when the show went to Broadway, the role was depicted as a cisgender gay female.Lauren Patten, the actress who plays Jo, shared a conversation she had with transgender actress and activist Shakina Nayfack last week, discussing her role in the character's development.

"I am profoundly sorry for the harm I caused, and I am thankful to Shakina, as well as the friends and colleagues with whom I have spoken privately, for holding me accountable," Patten, 29, wrote with the video. "It is my deepest hope for Jo to be a character that can be claimed and owned by folks of many queer identities — butch and masc women, nonbinary and genderqueer folks, trans men, and many more. Theatre has the power and the potential to be expansive, and I hope that Jo can be a representation of that moving forward." headtopics.com

Read more: People »

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